The Vaudevillians

Review by Willard Manus

The 7th annual Edge of the World Theater Festival took place recently in Los Angeles. In previous years participating theatre groups mounted shows on their home turf; this year all productions took place under one roof--Los Angeles Theatre Center, downtown at Spring and 5th--over four weekends. Thus a theatregoers could see several plays a day without budging outside except for a whiff of fresh air. With such sponsors as L.A. County Arts, NPA, Theatremania and the Convention and Visitors Bureau, EdgeFest tried hard to establish itself at the LATC. It is to be hoped that the experiment succeeded and that the Festival will be seen on Spring Street every October to come.


Among the highlights was a show called THE VAUDEVILLIANS. Featuring a rubber-legged duo, Mark Branner and Lance Brown, who are skilled in Three Stooges-type comedy, plus juggling, balancing and dancing, the show was a potpourri of variety, circus and magic routines, some old (such as Abbott & Costello's "Who's On First" routine), some new ("Existentialist Juggling").

Branner and Brown, who trained as Ringling Brothers Circus clowns, are a first-rate team and their generous work--they performed for nearly two hours, backed by a five-piece, Spike Jones-like band--was not only a splendid tribute to the men and women who used to trod the boards in two-a-day shows across the USA, but offered thoroughly enjoyable family fun as well.

The Vaudevillians can be reached at Professional Geek Productions, 42512 65th St, West, Lancaster, CA 93536 or at For more information on EdgeFest visit